Psychologists recognize the relationship between trauma, offending and mental illness. A trauma-informed approach requires legal representation that adequately explores, acknowledges, and represents the individualized presence and relevance of trauma to offending.

Drawing to the judge’s attention any factors that may be particularly pertinent in the circumstances may weigh in the client’s favor—any medical, psychological, and psychiatric history that can act as evidence of trauma.

Once you have documented evidence of trauma, finding the right evidence-based interventions should be provided to the courts for their understanding of how trauma impacts the future behavior of offenders. These interventions should emphasize strategies to develop resilience and strength-based approaches.

Examples of this could be long-term substance abuse therapy and long-term CBT Therapy. Trauma-informed therapy and a trauma-informed trained therapist are essential. The ‘High Court of Australia’ recognized that a ‘deprived or traumatic’ childhood was grounds for mitigation and leniency in sentencing.

How does trauma-informed sentencing help your case record? It makes you an expert at trauma-informed sentencing by consistently educating judges and other legal professionals on the benefits of trauma-informed interventions and the impact of trauma on offenders. Your clients benefit from a trauma-informed justice system. Your clients receive lesser sentences, and you earn the reputation of an attorney who advocates for clients who have suffered trauma.

If you want to utilize trauma-informed sentencing to obtain a lesser sentence for your clients, call the Downward Departure Specialists at 916-224-2680. We are experts and here to help.